U22: the live album of the 360° Tour

After a seven-month wait – and more – the U22 album finally reached the mailboxes of paying subscribers to U2.com. This live album of the 360° Tour includes 24 songs on 22 tracks which were chosen by fans. Is the album up to what was expected in order to live again the 360° tour?… Verdict


Author: Pauline
Translated by Florian

An (almost) representative tracklist of the tour

The U22 tracklisting is pretty sweet, including a version of Until The End Of The World dedicated to Frank Sinatra, Streets, or even Elevation – which stands up to its legend of being a perfect song for any rock concert. The most attractive thing about this tracklisting is that it preserves the highlights of the 360° tour: the come-back of songs that were gone missing such as (Zooropa, The Unforgettable Fire and Ultraviolet), songs that were hardly played but greatly enjoyed (One Tree Hill, Bad, Out Of Control and All I Want Is You/Love Rescue Me) and encore tracks.

Yet the tracklisting is not a good image of the differences between the several legs of the 360° tour. The 2011 legs are perfectly depicted – thanks to the 4 Achtung Baby tracks at the beginning of the show, but both 2009 and 2010 legs are almost forgotten. Unreleased titles played live in 2010 – which gave their uniqueness to the setlists – have totally gone missing; for a good reason though, as they were not among the tracks fans could elect except from Return of The Stingray Guitar. As far as 2009 shows are concerned, the tracklisting desperately lacks the songs from No Line On The Horizon that were played during the first legs. Unknown Caller was only just saved by U2.com – which offered it as a bonus – but other songs like No Line On the Horizon, Breathe, Crazy Tonight and Get On Your Boots didn’t get that chance.

The last unfortunate oversight – which leads the album not to be an exact rendition of the tour – is the absence of the Vertigo / Crazy Tonight / Sunday Bloody Sunday trio. When it comes to a double live album which aim is to make fans relive the 360° tour, it is hard to understand why those memorable songs are missing. Especially regarding Vertigo, even more powerful than during the Vertigo Tour.

U2 can’t be blamed for that: when you make a three-year tour with an evolutive setlist which changes from a year to another it gets pretty hard to give a perfectly reprsentative tracklisting of what the tour was using only 22 songs when 55 were played (covers excepted). In general the tracklisting remains faithful to what most setlists were.



Probably the best CD U2.com ever offered

The last two albums U2.com offered did not really get a warm welcome from fans because of an excess of remixes (on Artificial Horizon) and a lack of unreleased tracks (regarding Duals), so there were great expectations about U22.

Despite a tracklisting that was uneven on the whole tour, U22 is by far an excellent live album (even I, who is never satisfied and wrote this paper, got fulfilled since the first listen). The groundbreaking start with Real Thing and The Fly, the dream duo The Unforgettable Fire / Zooropa, the « Sinatra » version of Until The End of The World, the beautiful Bad, Ultraviolet and One Tree Hill, and the perfect ending with Moment of Surrender / Out of Control, are just so many good reasons to get this live album.

The sound quality if clearly better than what was proposed on the prior live recordings offered by U2.com: (Go Home and U2.Communication). It is thus easier to understand the long time it took to mix the album, which is the reason the album release got delayed. As far as the packaging is concerned, U2.com has also reached a higher level than usual. So far we were used to getting a poor paper sleeve in addition to the CD; this time U2.com actively participated by including a 22-page booklet filled with pictures – and quite good ones – of the tour. Even the cover – made from a Peter Rowen photo which was taken in Paris in 2010 – is much nicer than the austerity of the previous ones.

So, is it a success? Looks like it is. Among the nine CDs U2.com has ever offered, U22 is probably one of the best thanks to the large amount of tracks it contains and to its sound quality. Despite the forgetting of some tracks and an unpleasant wrong note on the City Of Blinding Lights chorus, all the other tracks reach a high standard, so does the album. With such an album fans will surely be able to experience again the 360° tour and tremble with pleasure…

EXCLUSIVE MUSIC: U22 – THE SOUNDTRACK OF U2360°

Last but not the least, the complete tracklist… again

U22 – THE DOUBLE-LIVE CD FROM U2360°
22 TRACKS SELECTED BY U2.COM SUBSCRIBERS

DISC ONE

1. EVEN BETTER THAN THE REAL THING
Recorded at Estadio Azteca, Mexico City, 15th May 2011

2. THE FLY
Recorded at Spartan Stadium, East Lancing 26 June 2011br>

3. MYSTERIOUS WAYS
Recorded at Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town 18 February, 2011

4. MAGNIFICENT
Recorded at Stadion Letzigrund, Zurich, 11 September 2010

5. UNTIL THE END OF THE WORLD
Recorded at Estadio Azteca, Mexico City, 14 May 2011

6. I STILL HAVEN’T FOUND WHAT I’M LOOKING FOR
Recorded at FNB Stadium, Johannesburg, 13 February 2011

7. STAY (FARAWAY, SO CLOSE!)
Recorded at Soldier Field, Chicago, 5 July 2011

8. ONE TREE HILL
Recorded at Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland, 26 November 2010

9. BEAUTIFUL DAY
Recorded at Stadion Maksimir, Zagreb, 10 August 2009

10. ELEVATION
Recorded at Veltins-Arena, Gelsenkirchen, 3 August 2009

11. BAD
Recorded at Stadio Olimpico, Rome, 8 October 2010

DISC TWO

12. ALL I WANT IS YOU/LOVE RESCUE ME
Recorded at ANZ Stadium, Sydney, 14 December 2010

13. THE UNFORGETTABLE FIRE
Recorded at Ullevi Stadion, Gothenburg, 31 July 2009

14. ZOOROPA
Recorded at M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, 22 June 2011

15. CITY OF BLINDING LIGHTS
Recorded at Parc Des Sports Charles-Ehrmann, Nice, 15 July 2009

16. MLK/WALK ON
Recorded at Stadion Maksimir, Zagreb, 9 August 2009

17. ONE
Recorded at Hampden Park, Glasgow, 18 August 2009

18. WHERE THE STREETS HAVE NO NAME
Recorded at Stadion Slaski, Chorzow, 6 August 2009

19. ULTRA VIOLET (LIGHT MY WAY)
Recorded at Estadio De Coimbra, Coimbra, 3 October 2010

20. WITH OR WITHOUT YOU
Recorded at Wembley Stadium, London, 14 August 2009

21. MOMENT OF SURRENDER
Recorded at Subiaco Oval, Perth, 18 December 2010

22. OUT OF CONTROL
Recorded at Hippodrome De Montreal, Montreal, 9 July 2011

Copyright 2012 U2 France / http://www.u2france.com/actu

If you’re among those who still haven’t received their copy: don’t lose hope! A shipping was made on Augst 13th.